SPAR store on Taslixhe street in Prishtina, Kosovo. Photo: SPAR Kosova

SPAR International has announced the launch of its entry into the Kosovan retail market, the 27th European market for the brand.

The launch event of SPAR Kosova was held on 10 July at the Swiss Mall in capital Prishtina. The new entity is set up by a consortium of experienced partners in FMCG wholesale and retail, who will work in partnership with SPAR International.

“We are delighted to partner with the local team in Kosovo,” said Tobias Wasmuht, managing director of SPAR International.

“Since granting the license, our teams have worked closely together to ensure the transfer of our tried and tested SPAR retail formats and international best practice.”

SPAR plans to open 35 stores in Kosovo within the next five years. Three stores have already begun trading and another three are set to open by the end of this year. A further 7 stores are planned for 2020.

Jeta Rukiqi, chairperson of SPAR Kosova, said: “It is a reality today that Kosovo, one of the least developed countries in Europe, is joining the family by continuing to become home to the most powerful brands in the world. With the opening of SPAR in our country, Kosovo itself becomes part of Europe. Kosovo today is where it deserves to be.”

The ongoing expansion of SPAR sees the brand now operating in 13,115 stores across four continents, employing around 350,000 people worldwide.